Down the Worm Hole in Madrid’s Hall of Creepy Crawlers
Four times a year, a hard-nosed reptile dealer treks across Europe to piece together a living—one slithering, scaly creature at a time.
Photos by Koren Helbig
Throughout the large hall people are lugging plastic bags filled with small plastic boxes from which peer their latest purchases: frowning chameleons and motionless lizards, squealing mice and furry spiders, multi-colored frogs and curled snakes. Mealworms writhe hotly against one another in cartons and crickets jump in their box prisons, the loud snap of their heads knocking against the plastic lids like the sound of rain on a hot tin roof.